Africans’ need to change mindsets 

By Elizabeth Osayande

The need to change one’s mindset that Africa and indeed Nigeria is bedeviled with issues of corruption, nepotism and ethnocentricity among others formed the submissions of speakers at the launch of the book,” Finishing Well, passion for leadership excellence,” written by Ibrahim Bamaiyi Maigada.

Guest speaker at the launch of the book held recently, at The Seventh Day Adventist, Maryland, Lagos, the Vice Chancellor, Babcock University, Prof. Tayo Ademola who shared his thoughts via YouTube explained that effective leadership is achievable in Africa if one follows the principles outlined in the book that includes: vision; learning; love; passion; sacrifice and mentoring.

According to Prof. Ademola: “Effective leadership is important for development in Africa; I thank God for the opportunity to present this book to the public. The book proffers remedies necessary and crucial to the numerable problems that bedeviled the African continent.

“The book combines real-world experience and biblical narrative. The author offers a remarkable piece that can best be appreciated by those who value knowledge and education.

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“While the theme of the book is the qualities of ideal leadership which are vision, integrity, love, passion, sacrifice and mentoring; the curial lesson is that Africans must rise above politics that are vulnerable to demagoguery and divisiveness. This can only be possible with the enthronement of leadership that manifests vision, love, sacrifice, passion and willingness to mentor for positive continuity for development and social economic growth.

“This is an instructive credo for leadership in Nigeria, a country that is scandalously blessed with human and natural resources, yet gratuitously poor, and punctuated by calls for succession due to passive ethnic jingoism, political bigotry, injustices and inequality in treatment by successive administrations.

“Finishing well, Passion for leadership excellence is a clear and benevolence call to aspiring leaders and those in leadership position today to seize the opportunity of leadership and turns things around for good of those they lead.” Prof.  Ademola said.

On his part, the book reviewer, Associate Professor of Comparative Religion and Church Ministry in the Religious Studies Department, Babcock University, Prof. Philemon Amanze stated that the book explains the virtue of leadership to be the premise on the integrity and wiliness to pass on the baton top a worthy succession.

On the reason for writing the book, the 65 years old Clergy and the Chaplaincy Director, Northern Nigerian, The Seventh Day Adventist Church, Nigeria, Ibrahim Maigadi stated that in his 43 years of active service,  17 years as a classroom teacher, and 27 years during the work of God, he is being inspired to write well about African leaders.

Maigadi reiterated that beyond few bad eggs of leaders, lots of African leaders some renown and others unknown have actually started and finished well.

Profiling about 34 African leaders such as Nelson Mandela; Julius Nyerere; Aminu Kanu; Michael Okpara among others in the 522 page book, who led and served well, the academician noted that: “I have cited good reasons African leaders not being about negativity. It is not about attacking someone. It is to say that we have leaders. Someone wrote the best world leaders, do you know an African was number two? Nelson Mandela. We have people in our country, in our continent that started and finished with integrity. “The clergy said.

Reinforcing the importance of the book, Maigadi explains: “The book is very important in this era because we need to tell our youths that it is possible to enter the university and have the vision of the grades you are graduating with.

“The principle of Finishing well is summarized in six power points. The number is Vision- the ability to see tomorrow today. Leaders should be visionary which God’s gift. The second one is learning. Learning is Character, that entails having integrity. A leader needs to read, write, and learn. The third is Love. You need to love, to lead people. Leading people without love is leadership without a face, without human feeling.

“Passion is the fourth. If you say it, you do it. You don’t need to lie.  Five, sacrifice. Where there is progress, there is sacrifice. And finally, the sixth point is mentoring. You have to prepare others that will take over. Let us deliberately train someone to take over. Our leaders should mentor others. You don’t have to choose. God told Moses go and take Caleb.

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